Yoga Rhythms with Blaithin
Blaithin is taking her personal practice to Salt and Soul Friday 14th October. Practicing Yoga with dance music playing she has called it Yoga-Rhythms. When asked to put pen to paper and explaining the class we got a long answer to a short question but one worth sharing…
‘Why Yoga and Dance music?’
Well 5 years ago I went to india to learn the art of teaching yoga. We were taught breathwork (pranayama) and yoga postures and alignments (the asanas), we were taught how to teach the postures and adjust during teaching, we were taught how to sequence postures so as to balance the body. In addition we also learned of the physical and emotional benefits of the pranayamas and asanas. Most importantly though we explored an understanding of Yamas and Niyamas, the Yogi’s ethical guidelines for good-living. The concept that kept drawing me in, asking for my attention was the Yama Satya, Truthfulness! What is your truth? In every and all situations, when you’re angry, when you’re happy, when you’re tired or happily chilled. What is your truth, who are you under all of that? When I came home that question continued to colour my daily life. Getting breakfast, what is my truth, what do I really want to eat? Driving out to Strandhill, which way do I really want to go, by the front of the mountain or the backroad? I applied this question to all the little moments of my life (and still do), it felt great but yes, I was late a lot! Overtime I found I was getting answers to bigger questions, questions that I hadn’t realised I was asking, the questions that lurk in the backroads of your mind! And sometimes with that clarity came the need for bravery and as I write I can’t help but hear the Mylo Sunworshipper tune buzz around my head.
‘…I had the college, I had the earning the money and the material trip, I just decided I was going to find a new way of life, so I took off on my bicycle…’
Well I took off on my yoga mat. In Yoga there’s a lot of talk of the disciplined practice, a daily commitment, a focused intention. I was paying focused attention to every aspect of my life, I felt I was being a good girl, you know?, and really working on these things. When I came to my mat, when I asked myself ‘what’s my truth?’, I realised I felt burdened by this question, I felt ‘enough with the teaching!’, I just want to be, I just want to yoga! And jesus it hit me, in a moment of frustration, when I wanted to practice but was tired of being so damn serious…I just want to Dance!! Ooh and dance I did, and laughed at myself, and then cried, as a good Yogi should, as I had a found a truth!
I don’t always practice with tunes pumping, but when I do, it is for me, the most exhilarating and liberating time spent. I have over the years refined, dare I say ‘disciplined’ the practice so it still holds the true essence of Yoga. Drawing breathwork in to the rhythm of the music, moving the body in rhythm with the breath. I like to use a long steady beat to complete a fully balanced sequence then freestyle through some old time favourites. A recent visit to Sligo by House of Yoga has inspired me and dissolved the last of my doubts, feeling brave enough now to share this practice, to share my truth. I think of the Niyama Santosa, meaning acceptance. This is how I practise.